The Octopus presents you an aquatic ballet, captured by wildlife photographer and biologist Sébastien Barrio. An exceptional encounter with mobula rays, an endangered species in the Mediterranean.
Enjoy a moment of levitation amongst these sea giants, to appreciate their fragile and singular beauty.
A little bit about Sébastien Barrio, wildlife photographer and biologist
Where do you come from?
I grew up in the South of France in the Drome and Camargue region. Today, I live near Paris, where I work as a GEMAPI project manager.
What led you to follow this path?
I nurtured a passion for animals from a young age and as soon as I could hold a camera, I felt the need to capture my observations. When I was twelve, I would borrow my mum’s camera and from there, little by little, I learned and developed my skills. Later, this passion influenced my choice of studies where I completed a license in biology and a master in continental waters management.
What are you the most passionate about in your work?
More than the need to capture a moment, it’s the observation of wild animals that drives my activity, and that’s what I want to transmit. I take advantage of the opportunity I have to observe wildlife and capture it to show the world its singular beauty and fragility.
What worries you the most with the future of our seas and oceans?
It’s hard to wrap your head around the fact that 95% of people are not connected to our natural environment. I’m afraid that the tremendous work delivered by actors everyday to protect wildlife all over the world, is not going to be enough to turn the tides.
In consequence we might see in our lifetime, the total disappearance of all great animals. Global warming and the rapid destruction of ecosystems due to human activities are not reassuring matters. Nevertheless, I believe that after the end of mankind, life will find its way to new creation, as it always did.
An Aquatic Ballet explained
Why did you pick these pictures?
I chose these shots because they embody the spirit of this expedition. Setting sails to meet this amazing species and develop scientific protocols to observe them, tag them and learn more about these giants of the Mediterranean Sea.
In what contexte did you shoot them?
These pictures were taken during my expedition with Ailerons association off Corsica. Observations were made while sailing and free-diving with a team of motivated volunteers!
Mobula rays Aquatic Ballet
“Free diving, Julien approaches the Mobula Rays in an attempt to measure them with a laser turntable.”
“Ailerons’ President, Matthieu Lapinski is trying to spot the school of Mobula Rays we observe from the boat to place a GPS tag on one of the individuals.”
“Three mobula rays are engaged in a courtship. The leading female is trying to escape from the two males. After a long chase, the most persistent one may have a chance to seduce the female.”
“Emerging from the deep blue of the Mediterranean, a Mobula Ray faces the diver.”
“The president of the Ailerons association, Matthieu Lapinski free diving, is trying to place a beacon on one of the three sea devils present in the image. The position of the diver in this image gives a good idea of the size of Mobula rays.”
“A female Mobula ray cruise in the blue of the Mediterranean enjoying a ray of sunshine.”
For Christmas, The Octopus and Sébastien have teamed up to offer you these exclusive pictures in limited edition!
If you want to immortalize one of these moments captured by Sébastien Barrio, click here to find out about the prices and quantities available (beware very limited editions).
For each sale, 10% of the profits will be donated to Ailerons association, on a mission to save Mediterranean sharks and rays.
Fair Winds Captain,